Boston Marathon: Getting There

by Joanne on April 19, 2011

This is the first of three posts about my Boston Marathon.

Not sure it was what everyone wanted to do but driving the marathon route from Hopkinton to Boston was a priority on my list.  I thought I might get a great photo of me standing on the starting line the Saturday before the big race.  Not so.  There were a lot people milling around and police directing everyone to keep moving. The best shot I got was hanging out the window of the car…the road!


We probably drove through at a busy time of day and missed a good opportunity, but my excitement level had reached a seam-bursting high.  I was torn between saying STOP THE CAR and saying HURRY UP! I CAN’T LOOK!  I kept my mouth shut as Ted proceeded over the starting line and gingerly along the course.


As we continued along the route, I thought it wasn’t a STRAIGHT down hill as everyone said, it was certainly downward but rolling.  That was a good thing.  I thought my legs would be able to handle the fluctuating terrain rather than a straight downward shot. 

We kept our eyes open for land marks as much as we could.  There was too much traffic to lose ourselves completely in the course and it’s historic landmarks.

It was late and Ted wanted to eat.  A mile before Wellesley College, we stopped at Morse Tavern.  It was a delicious lunch for everyone.  *TJ’s Lounge at mile 2 along the course was way too crowded even though it would have been a memorable stop for lunch.  *As much as I wanted to look for Morse Tavern while running the race, I missed it completely on Monday. My mind was elsewhere.




A quick lunch and back in the car for more route scoping


Can’t wait to hear those screaming girls of Wellesley.

We were up and over the Newton Hills before I realized we had hit them.  They weren’t that threatening from the car.  However, I refuse to under estimate their impact after running a fluctuating and mostly descending 16 miles before.  I hoped the “cemetery of lost souls” wouldn’t add my name to it’s list of “residents” come late Monday.


We were within 4 miles of the finish line when I decided I wanted the remaining curse to remain a mystery.  After driving 22 miles of the course, somewhere, deep down, I knew I’d be up for the challenge.

We made our way to The Hyatt in Cambridge.  As Ted and I entered our room, we were disappointed with the view.  It was also a handicapped room which meant hanging our clothes up, left them dragging on the closet floor.  It wasn’t even a king size bed.  I called the front desk, turned into that “most dreaded hotel guest” mode and after a lot of “sweet” nastiness, was able to convince the manager to move us to another room.  It took a lot of convincing because the hotel was jam packed.  However, we did get our king size bed and a better view.

The hotel would provide shuttles to the buses at Boston Common where runners would be transported toward Athletes Village on Monday.  Hotel shuttles would leave every half hour so I planned on trying for the second shuttle trip.

Saturday night, we enjoyed an outstanding dinner at The Union Oyster House.  A historic restaurant near Faneuil Hall, just around the corner from the outdoor market.  Before we left the hotel, we momentarily wondered if taking a taxi would be a wiser choice.  Nah!  Ted can drive. Poor Ted.  It wasn’t the best decision.  The GPS directed us to the wrong Union Street.  We got lost. The traffic was outrageous because there was a Celtics game.  Buses and cars were all over the roads.  We lucked into parking at a garage near The Oyster House and later regretted it when parking for 2 hours cost us $28.00.  That’s the price of a good bottle of wine!


It was cold and windy.


The best cornbread I’ve ever tasted.  Although it seemed a bit sweet so I only took a couple of bites. That was tough resistance.


I enjoyed a glass of wine, after all it wasn’t the night BEFORE the marathon.  I still had over 36 hours before start time.  My dinner was a delicious lemon baked haddock with asparagus, grilled tomato, and red bliss potatoes.

We were all pretty tired from the long drive and celebrating our first night in Boston.  Back to the hotel for a fitful night’s sleep.  At least on my part.

Have you been to The Union Oyster House in Boston?  Great place isn’t it?!

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  • At 2011.04.20 07:52, Heather said:

    I love that you left the last few miles a mystery!

    • At 2011.04.25 10:32, the dawn said:

      i love that you drove the course! did it help you to find the landmarks during the race? i feel like i missed so many of the things i wanted to see. now i totally wish i had do this! except, i didn’t have a car….

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